Following Tottenham’s defeat to West Ham 6 days ago, it seems that confirmation of Chelsea’s title victory is all but imminent before their match at the Hawthorns this Friday. Despite scoring 71 league goals contributing to a hugely positive goal difference of +48, it seems that when the chips are down, Spurs struggle to score goals.
At White Hart Lane this season, we’ve been nothing short of sensational. Out of 18 games played, we’ve won 16 and drawn just 2. Only 5 other Premier League clubs can boast finishing a season unbeaten at home; something Spurs are looking to accomplish for the first time in our history. However, in crunch games away Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool and West Ham we’ve found ourselves falling short of creativity and, more crucially, goals.
It’s true that this season has been a massive step forwards in the right direction for Tottenham. We are currently sitting on 77 points, which is 5 higher than our largest ever Premier League points, with three games still left to play. Yet, the same issues that plagued us last season have held us back this season too. We have an almost unrivalled starting 11 in terms of talent, work-rate and team spirit. However, you don’t win trophies with 11 players. You win them with at least 18.
In the FA Cup semi final defeat to Chelsea, this was evidenced to our detriment. Chelsea were able to play a strong starting line-up without the likes of Diego Costa, Cesc Fabregas, Gary Cahill and Eden Hazard. This is a luxury that Tottenham simply do not have. Should Spurs rest the likes of Harry Kane, Mousa Dembele, Toby Alderweireld and Dele Alli, it’s hard to envisage a similar level of consistency that teams like Chelsea showcase.
It has often been pointed out that our squad lacks quality depth. Our 2016 Summer signings have not had the impact we all desired. Vincent Janssen clearly works hard and the smile on his face when his hard work is rewarded is a delight to all fans of Tottenham Hotspur. Unfortunately, we haven’t been able to see that enough this season. Janssen has only been able to chip in with 2 Premier League goals, one of which from the penalty spot. Though I’m a fan of his commitment and willingness to get his hands dirty, these were all things we said about Roberto Soldado, the infamous ‘Bale signing’ flop.
A striker that I personally was devastated to see leave the club in 2014 was Jermain Defoe. At 34 years old, he’s proven himself to English football that he’s still got that golden touch. Last season he finished as Sunderland’s top scorer with 15 league goals, which is the tally he currently sits on this season too. It’s hard for to imagine Defoe not scoring goals in a Spurs shirt, even at 34. He’d be perfectly suited to the role of a late impact sub, or even stepping in for Harry Kane and leading the line should he fall victim to injury.
Another signing who’s failed to deliver is Moussa Sissoko, but this one’s a little worse considering we gave Newcastle United £30 million for him. I hate to criticise players who need support from the fans, but I struggle to see the sense in this transfer. Where would he fit in to the team? What was the plan for him being here? He wasn’t going to start ahead of Son, Lamela or Eriksen and he certainly didn’t add the pace the squad was crying out for. I actually believe Sissoko can be a good player, but we play a system at Spurs that he blatantly does not fit into. I wonder, what on earth was the thinking behind this move?
What do you think? Was it a panic buy? And what should we do about it now?
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